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The Book Thief Title Symbolizes Thievery Theme

The Book Thief Title Symbolizes Thievery Theme

In the book, The Book Thief, the title refers to the major book thief, Liesel. Liesel perpetuates notable thefts leading her to earn the nickname “book thief.”  As the title suggests, there are parts in the book where stealing has been used to portray symbolic and literal meanings. For example, Liesel presents the theme of thievery when steals books from Ilsa’s home library.  Rudy in the company of other characters steals food out of hunger. The book title conforms to the thievery theme that the author has used to portray symbolic and literal meanings as presented by different characters. blankLiesel stealing symbolizes her love for books to satisfy her educational needs, and as the only tool, she can use to refuge the Nazi regime. The two aspects influence her to steal several books. The book has portrayed this theme through both and symbolic and literal meanings. For example, the book has illustrated Liesel as the thief and a defiance person towards Nazi censorship (Zusak 25). The literal meaning is well-depicted by Liesel when she steals different books to fulfill her educational goals. Symbolically, Liesel shows her defiance to Nazi regime when she is offered a book by Ilsa but refuses to take it due to bitterness she has against her (Ilsa) for laying off Rosa, Liesel foster mother. Surprisingly, Liesel opts to steal the same book and others from the Isla’s home library (Zusak 130). Isla is amazed by the Liesel actions and wonders whether she is encouraging Liesel to steal by leaving her library window open.  However, Ilsa is a motivating figure and therefore, she does not feel let down by the Liesel’s unacceptable behavior. Ilsa was willing to help Liesel to continue reading even if it meant Liesel was the one to set up the terms (Zusak 136). This context brings out Liesel as a natural thief who believes in stealing as the only means of acquiring necessary things in life.
Liesel stealing of books symbolizes her challenges as well as triumphs she encounters in her life. The critical analysis of the book portrays Liesel as the person who is ready to start a new life, and the let the past life experiences go. The stealing behavior practiced by Liesel symbolizes her grief feeling, feelings of loss and the huge feeling of rejection. Liesel believes he can only achieve her empowerment through stealing.  For example, Liesel is seen stealing Shoulder Shrug to symbolize that she was against Hitler regime (Zusak 67). Hitler wanted the shrug destroyed, however, Liesel stole it to prevent Hitler from achieving his ambitions (Zusak 109). Liesel also uses her relationship with Rudy so that she may advance her thieving behavior. Despite that they trust one another, Rudy understands that he has to do something that Liesel likes to ask her for a favor. For example, before Rudy can ask for a kiss from Liesel for the first time, he had to save a book from the Amper River (Zusak 48). Liesel relationship with Max as depicted through the Dream Carrier shows how Liesel takes advantages from her friends to overcome the struggles she faces in life. In her relationship with Max, Liesel steals more books, and the only thing she can give Max is by reading them loudly (Zusak 140).  Max-Liesel stealing relationship appears shaken as symbolized by the Last Human Stranger. This symbolism shows how Liesel misses Max as she struggles to realize her dreams.blankThe act of stealing is also portrayed by Liesel and her friend Rudy as the way of reclaiming their control over the world. For example, Rudy and Liesel joined a team of boys who repeatedly stole vegetable and apples from the neighborhood orchard (Zusak 49).  Additionally, this team of ‘thieves’ caused a food delivery boy to fall so that they may steal food from him. In this part of the book, the stealing perpetuated by Rudy and Liesel is not used to present crime but literal and symbolic meanings. Rudy and Liesel for the first time steal food out of hanger; this is an indication they stealing because they are literally hungry. However, later they change their attitude, and they seal stealing as the only way they can empower themselves. Liesel appears to exercise her empowerment when she steals from Ilsa because she fired her mother, Rosa. Liesel feels helpless and the only way she can fight for her mother and prove her power is by stealing from Ilsa’s home library. Similarly, Rudy feels motivated by the act, and as a result, she engages in the stealing as a way of cheering himself up.  For both Liesel and Rudy stealing has both literal and symbolic meanings. At first, the two characters steal because they are literally hungry. Secondly, the two individuals feel that their positions in the world are threatened. Therefore, they opt for stealing to gain some empowerment to have control over the world. However, as much they have strived to reclaim their power the world is too powerful and hence it is much far ahead of their control.
Liesel and Rudy appear as the major characters who have been used to advance the theme of stealing. In the book, the stealing has been employed to portray both literal and symbolic meanings. At first, Liesel steals books because she is literally in need of knowledge on how to read and write. Later, Liesel gets empowerment through books, and she starts to steal them to symbolize defiance to the Nazi regime. For example, she steals from Ilsa as way restoring power that she believed her and her family had been deprived. Through her actions, she feels she will develop the power that will offer her refuge against the tough controlling Hitler regime that had led to the eruption of war and chaos. On the other hand, Liesel and her friend Rudy together with another team of boys literally steals because they are hungry. However, later they still food to gain empowerment; this symbolizes their eager to achieve control over the world. For example, they steal from the nearby orchard not because they are hungry but to cheer themselves up.  As per the book, it was not wrong for Liesel and Rudy to steal. Their stealing behavior does not amount to criminalities, but rather it has been employed to depict literal and symbolic meanings.

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